PACIFIC PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY ON POPULATION AND DEVELOPMENT
(Revised October 2004, May 2007, November 2007)
1 The Organization shall be called the Pacific Parliamentary Assembly on Population and Development (or PPAPD).
2.1 In this constitution, unless the context otherwise requires or an exception is specifically stated:
a) "ASSEMBLY" means "the Pacific Parliament Assembly for Population and Development (PPAPD)".
b) "Parliamentarian" means any person who is a member of a national parliament, congress, federal chamber, assembly, or elective legislative body.
c) Unless otherwise indicated, "member" shall mean a full-fledged member of the ASSEMBLY.
d) The "countries of the Pacific" in which a national group of parliamentarians can be formed means Pacific Island Forum countries.
e) A “national group of parliamentarians” is a parliamentarians’ advocacy group on population and development endorsed by a national parliament.
f) A General Conference is the biennial meeting of the Pacific Parliamentary Assembly for Population and Development.
g) A Thematic Conference is a special conference addressing a particular theme or issue and is normally convened back-to-back with the General Conference of the Assembly. The participation to the thematic Conference is broader than the membership of PPAPD. Selection of participants is dependent on the theme of the Conference.
h) The PPAPD Secretariat is the body responsible for administering PPAPD matters on behalf of the Assembly.
3.1 The objectives of the ASSEMBLY shall be:
1) To promote good governance, transparency, accountability and sustainable development of the region’s natural resources in relation to population and development;
2) To promote the interests of Pacific Island Countries in various world fora, focusing on the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) and Millennium Development Goals which include:·
- Eradicating extreme poverty and hunger·
- Achieving universal primary education·
- Promoting gender equality and empowerment of women·
- Reducing child mortality·
- Improving maternal health·
- Combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases·
- Ensuring environmental stability·
- Developing a global partnership for development;
3) To encourage parliamentary and other activities aimed at facilitating population and development policies to improve the living standards, security and well-being of peoples in the Pacific;
3.2 More specifically, the activities may include the following:
(a) To establish and promote collaboration amongst parliamentarians, their associates and institutions in all the countries of the Pacific in the development of public policies, the utilization and sharing of data, information, research findings, expertise and experience pertaining to population and development.
(b) To facilitate, support, sponsor and organize meetings and conferences of parliamentarians as well as expert meetings, seminars, workshops and training programmes in population and development.(c) To facilitate, support and sponsor new and continuing research towards a better understanding of and solutions to the problems of population and development, especially as they apply to the countries of the Pacific, with a particular focus on youth development issues and the needs of the older population.
(d) To facilitate, support, sponsor, produce, and disseminate documentation, publications, scientific and research findings, newsletters and promotional materials relating to population and development.(e) To establish and augment the financial resources needed to render the ASSEMBLY capable of fulfilling its functions and responsibilities.
(f) To provide guidance on relevant programmes and best practice models in the area of population and development and to serve as a channel of communication and collaboration amongst parliamentarians.
(g) To encourage and promote the formation of national groups of parliamentarians on population and development in those countries of the Pacific in which national groups have not yet been formed, and to support such national groups of parliamentarians so as:
(i) to increase awareness and promote understanding of the interrelationships between population and development within their countries and throughout the Region;
(ii) to initiate, promote and support exchanges and exchange programmes amongst parliamentarians in the Pacific, and amongst them and with parliamentarians in other countries of the world, to encourage innovative and effective ideas and approaches to population and development issues;
(iii) to promote a continuing dialogue between parliamentarians, on the one hand, and social, economic and population planners and implementers at local, national, regional and global levels, on the other;
(iv) to cooperate in the preparations for international meetings and reviews of global conferences and summits; and
(v) to perform such other lawful acts as are appropriate, conducive or necessary to the attainment of the above objectives.
A. PPAPD Membership:
4.1 Ordinary members of the Assembly shall consist of a Parliamentary Group or Select Committee established by the House of Representatives of a particular country, to address population and development, and other related issues.
4.2 In countries where these groups or committees have not been established, membership will be determined by the office of the Speaker of Parliament.
4.3 Admission of new ordinary members: Parliamentary groups or select committees may be admitted to membership of the Assembly by the Secretariat of PPAPD on the recommendation of the Executive Committee.
4.4 Associate Members: Associate members of the Assembly shall consist of a Parliamentary Group or Select Committee established by the House of Representatives or its equivalent in a particular member territory of SPC, to address population and development and other related issues. Associate members do not have voting rights.
4.5 Ex-officio Members of the Executive will comprise UNFPA, SPC, AFPPD, Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat (PIFS) and UNDP.
4.6 Support for national Parliamentary Groups: Each Parliamentary group must have a dedicated staff / team to ensure support the work of the parliamentary group including conducting research, helping develop or coordinate implementation of work programmes and be the focal point for the PPAPD Secretariat at the national level that ensures a consistent two-way flow of information between the national Parliamentary group and the PPAPD Secretariat.
4.7 Support from AFPPD: AFPPD will share its experiences and lessons learnt with PPAPD and will provide support in areas such as technical support, study visits, attachment programmes, and financial assistance where necessary for programmes of mutual benefit to both bodies.
B. Partnership with Asian Forum of Parliamentarians on Population and Development (AFPPD)
4.8 AFFPD in collaboration with UNFPA was a founding member of PPAPD. PPAPD is an independent body of Pacific Parliamentarians; however, it also serves as the Pacific branch of AFPPD.
ORGANIZATION AND STRUCTURE
A. Assembly and General Conference
5.1 The ASSEMBLY shall consist of all its members. Each country shall send at least one representative to the meetings of the ASSEMBLY. Each country shall have one vote.
5.2 The ASSEMBLY shall have an official emblem and/or logo and an official seal, as decided by the General Conference of the ASSEMBLY.
5.3 The General Conference of the ASSEMBLY shall be held at least once every two years:
a) to receive and review the report of the Executive Committee covering the preceding two year period;
b) to discuss important and emerging population and development issues affecting the Pacific region;
c) to develop a PPAPD workplan for the following two year period;
d) to elect its officers
e) to transact any other business, as appropriate.
5.4 For the General Conference of the ASSEMBLY, a quorum shall consist of one-half of the membership.
5.5 The ASSEMBLY shall make its decisions on the basis of a majority of the members present and voting by voice, but the Chairperson may require a show of hands, standing vote or roll call vote with the Chairperson having the casting vote, except for amendments to this constitution, when approval by two-thirds of the members present is required.
5.6 The Chairperson of the ASSEMBLY shall preside at its General Conference. In the absence of the Chairperson, a designated Vice Chairperson will preside.
5.7 An extraordinary meeting of the ASSEMBLY can be convened by its Executive Committee, or by written request of not less than one-quarter of the full membership.
B. The Executive Committee
5.8 The Executive Committee shall consist of five officers selected from amongst the PPAPD membership. These are:
a Chairperson, three Vice Chairpersons and a Treasurer.
The Chairperson of the Executive Committee is also the Chairperson of the Assembly and the General Conference.
The selection of officers other than the Chairperson will follow a rotating alphabetical sequence (as specified below) to ensure that each country has an opportunity to hold office. No country shall be represented twice in the Executive Committee at the same time.
The Chairperson shall be selected by consensus of the General Assembly.
Tenure: The Chairperson shall hold office for a period of two years, renewable by mutual agreement and consensus of the General Assembly.
The other executive members shall hold office for two years on a national basis.
Chairperson: Fiji shall assume the first Chairperson role. Upon completion of the term, the term could be renewed by consensus of the General Assembly.
Vice Chairpersons: The three Vice Chairpersons will be from the three Pacific Island sub-regions, in the reverse alphabetical order. Melanesia will be represented by Vanuatu, followed by Solomon Islands and so on; Micronesia will be represented by Palau, followed by Nauru and so on; Polynesia will be represented by Tuvalu, followed by Tonga and so on.
Treasurer: Following the usual alphabetical order, Australia will assume the Treasurer position first.
Appointment of all offices shall be for a two-year term, commencing from the date of the second PPAPD meeting.
5.9 In the absence of the Chairperson, one of the Vice Chairpersons will preside as the acting Chairperson on a rotational basis.
5.10 The Executive Committee shall meet at least annually:
- a) to review implementation of the annual work plan of the Secretariat;
- b) to consider emerging population and development issues affecting the Pacific region;
- c) to revise and endorse the next annual work plan and budget;
- d) to approve the audited accounts;
- e) to review membership applications; and
- f) to endorse reports to PPAPD members
5.11 A quorum of the meeting of the Executive Committee shall consist of a simple majority.
5.12 The Executive Committee shall make its decisions by a majority vote.
5.13 The Chairperson shall preside over meetings of the Executive Committee and the General Conference of the ASSEMBLY. The Chairperson shall be responsible for the proper conduct of such meetings.
5.14 The Vice Chairperson shall perform such duties as may be assigned by the Chairperson. In the absence of the Chairperson, the current designated Vice Chairperson will preside.
5.15 The Treasurer shall be responsible for the ASSEMBLY’s finances. The Treasurer shall cause proper books to be kept, shall arrange for annual audits of the accounts and shall report to the ASSEMBLY on its finances.
5.16 In case an Executive Committee member resigns, dies, is incapacitated or for any other reason is prevented from discharging their duties fully, the country from which the member comes shall nominate a replacement who, upon the approval of the Executive Committee, will serve out the unexpired term.
C. The PPAPD Secretariat
5.17 Location of PPAPD Secretariat: The PPAPD Secretariat will be located where it can best service the needs of all national Parliamentary groups, as agreed to by the General Assembly.
5.18 The PPAPD Secretariat shall be resourced including with such personnel and capacity to provide adequate support to all national Parliamentary groups in implementing and monitoring the national and regional components of the PPAPD work programmes.
5.19 The PPAPD Secretariat shall be hosted by SPC and UNFPA for an initial period, allowing for the shortest time possible to nurture the Secretariat to become an independent entity.
5.20 The Secretariat shall be responsible for administering, implementing and reporting on the PPAPD workplan, under the guidance of the Executive Committee.
5.21 The executive officer of the Secretariat shall be the PPAPD Coordinator, appointed from outside parliamentary ranks by the Chairperson, on the advice and consent of the Executive Committee.
5.21.1 The PPAPD Coordinator shall work under the direction and supervision of the Chairperson to carry out the policies and programmes decided by the Executive Committee and the ASSEMBLY. The PPAPD Coordinator will serve as secretary for meetings of the Executive Committee and the General Conference.
5.21.2 The PPAPD coordinator will be supported by other such persons that would provide the services required to support the national parliamentary group work-plans.
D. The Thematic Conference
5.22 PPAPD may convene a ‘thematic conference’ from time to time and usually back-to-back with the General Conference to focus on specific themes that are important for parliamentarians to be appraised about or involved in. The thematic conference will have a much wider participation than the General Conference, including persons invited from the various sectors being addressed under the theme of the conference.
5.23 The Chair for thematic Conference will normally be provided by the country hosting the General Conference, as opposed to the chairing arrangements for the General Conference of the Assembly which is the Chair of PPAPD or in the Chair’s absence, one of the three Vice-Chairs.
5.24 The PPAPD Secretariat will assist in the identification of the appropriate themes and the coordination of the conference program in association with the hosting country.
6.1 The funds of the ASSEMBLY shall consist of voluntary contributions from members, intergovernmental organizations, foundations and civil society organizations and individuals. The accounts of the ASSEMBLY shall be maintained by the Treasurer and audited on an annual basis. The audited accounts will be submitted through the Treasurer to the meeting of the Executive Committee and the General Conference of the ASSEMBLY.
6.2 The Executive Committee shall select more than one bank to act as depositories of the funds of the ASSEMBLY and determine the manner of receiving, depositing and disbursing the funds.
6.3 No part of the funds or earnings of the organization shall be directed for the pecuniary benefit of any member or for any political campaign on behalf of any candidate for public office.
7.1 Parliamentarians shall serve the ASSEMBLY and the Executive Committee on a voluntary basis and without remuneration.
7.2 Officers and members can be recompensed for travel costs and per diem expenses involved in their attendance at meetings and on official ASSEMBLY business.
8.1 Amendments to this Constitution can be proposed by any member country.
8.2 A constitutional amendment requires the approval of the General Conference or of an Extraordinary conference specially convened for the purpose of considering amendments to the Constitution, provided that notice of the proposed amendments, alterations or repeal of the relevant sections of the Constitution is included in the notice of such a meeting. At any such meeting of the ASSEMBLY, the amendment must receive the approval of two-thirds of the members present and voting.
9.1 The ASSEMBLY shall not be dissolved, except with the consent of not less than two-thirds of the total voting membership expressed either in person or by proxy at a General Conference convened for the purpose, or in writing where circumstances do not permit such a meeting.
9.2 Upon dissolution of the ASSEMBLY, the Executive Committee shall dispose of all the assets of the organization exclusively for charitable, educational or scientific purposes.